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Episode #59. Saturday May 22, 2021, 2:30 pm EDT

Episode Abstract: Have you heard colleagues talk about University Design for Learning (UDL) and wonder what it is? Are you charged with developing training in your organization or institution related to UDL? Perhaps you are interested in developing online courses that take into account UDL. Knowing this is a global, if not universal, concern, Elizabeth (Betsy) Dalton and Susie Gronseth edited a book with 47 chapters and nearly 90 contributors, Universal Access Through Inclusive Instructional Design: International Perspectives on UDL, that was published by Routledge in 2020. In the show, they will be joined by chapter authors from South Africa and Chile who will share their perspectives on how universally designed programs and instruction is happening in their parts of the world, some strategies and tools that they have found helpful in their UDL journey, and the persisting issues they continue to face as they work to achieve the goal of inclusive education. Without a doubt, Episode #59 should be a highly enjoyable and informative session. Yes, it is time Silver Lining for Learning included an episode on UDL.

More about our guests, below the video


Elizabeth (Betsy) Dalton, Ph.D., has worked in the field of special education, specializing in assistive and educational technology applications, for over 40 years. She has counseled students with disabilities, served on the faculty at Rhode Island College, and started TechACCESS of Rhode Island, RI’s statewide assistive technology center. Since 2005, she has worked with UDL, focusing on helping educators at all levels to integrate UDL into classroom and online practice. She was a post-doctoral fellow in UDL Leadership at Boston College and CAST and presently is principal consultant for Dalton Education Services International (DESI), which has taken her around the world to support inclusive education initiatives globally. Find her on LinkedIn or contact Betsy by email:

Susie Gronseth, Ph.D., is Clinical Associate Professor in Learning, Design, and Technology at the University of Houston. She focuses on inclusive instructional design and teaching practices to support diverse learners, particularly in teacher training, online learning, and medical education. She also serves as the evaluator on several funded projects from the National Science Foundation, connecting strategic programming design perspectives with evaluation metrics that demonstrate impacts of project target aims. She currently co-chairs the UDL Special Interest Group (UDL-SIG) of the Society for Information Technology in Teacher Education (SITE). In 2020, Susie received a Distinguished Alumni Award from the Indiana University School of Education and, in 2021, she received the Innovation in Instructional Technology Award from the University of Houston. Susie can be reached at or on LinkedIn.

Marcia Lyner-Cleophas, Ph.D., authored the Universal Access book chapter titled “The Prospects of Universal Design for Learning in South Africa to Facilitate the Inclusion of All Learners,” which discusses policies and procedures for implementation of UDL in South African higher education. She is an educational psychologist and manages the Disability Unit at Stellenbosch University, Western Cape, South Africa. She works in higher education as a reflective practitioner in the field of disability inclusion, and previously worked at the Noluthando School for Deaf learners and in high school. She is an active member of the Higher and Further Education Disability Services Association (HEDSA) and an advocate for universal access, which includes UDL and universal design as drivers for access for all. Find Marcia on LinkedIn or contact her at

Boris Alvarez, MBA, is the Director of Strategy of the Fellow Group in Santiago, Chile, an institution focused on Inclusive Education and the development of Diverse Teams across organizations, with experience in Chile, Peru, Spain, United States, and other Spanish-speaking countries. He has a bold commitment to working ethics and topics such as UDL, inclusion, social justice and development, and innovation. He co-authored the Universal Access chapter “Decaffeinated UDL: Chile in Quest of Inclusive Education” that offers a critical inquiry into the interpretation and implementation of UDL in the Chilean context. Find him on LinkedIn or contact Boris at